AllÂ my life I have imagined what I’ve always called “THE Day.”Â The scene in my head was so vivid at times that it brought tears to my eyes.Â It’s varied a little over the years, sometimes ending with me dramatically slumped on the floor in shock (yes, I was a drama queen as a teenager even in my imagination), others ended with my standing in stunned silence.Â The reaction doesn’t matter and in reality is totally unpredictable.Â It always starts the same though.Â I go to the mailbox and find a letter from a publisher.Â My hands shake and my breath is held as I open it with slow dread.Â And then I read THE letter — the one that tells me my book is wonderful and they want to buy it.
That day is a long time coming still, I know that.Â For one thing, I don’t have a completed novel for anybody to even reject, let alone love.Â Also, times have changed.Â Technology has altered the way things are done.Â “THE Day” is more likely to arrive by e-mail than snail mail.Â Â Still, I’ve had a taste this week, and I want more.
I’ve been working very hard at the follow-through.Â Including the crazy clown sweater story, I had seven stories out in the world waiting for an answer yesterday.Â Now the total is six.
I am pleased to announce my short story “How Greg’s Chupacabra Became a Small Town Legend and Ended Up Between the Wooden Eye and the Wig Collection at the Caney Valley Historical Society” has been accepted for publication in the September issue of the Seahorse Rodeo Folk Review.Â Â They sent me the e-mail of acceptance about 24 hours after I submitted it to them.
As in my lifelong vision, I opened the e-mail with dread and held my breath.
“Thanks for submitting your work to Seahorse, we always really appreciate the people that think enough of us and what we’re doing to take the time to send work our way,”Â it said.
And myÂ heart sank — another rejection. I read on anyway.Â Maybe it would be my first rejection letter that actually gave some sort of feedback instead of just a blanketed form letter.
It went on.Â “We really liked this and would like to run it in the September issue of the Review. Â We will be in touch soon with more information.”Â Wait, what?Â I had to read it again, because THAT doesn’t make sense.
Full disclosure here, this is not actually a paying market.Â Of all the stories I sent out, I chose this one as a “giveaway” story.Â This magazine is more of an online artist’s colony, but they do promote the writers, artists, and photographers they accept into their fold.Â And there aren’tÂ many of them, so I think I’m in very good company.Â I’ve read some of the stories in their magazine, and they aren’t posting crap – weird stuff, sure, but weird is my specialty.Â And now I have something else to add to my cover letters.
And so, while we still have a long road to go until “THE Day,” yesterday I had my first of “A Day.”Â I’m looking forward to many more, because if I put together enough “A Days,” “THE Day” can’t help but come.
And for the record, I did puddle up just a little at the e-mail.